HK’s US envoy: ‘One country, two systems’ is key to economic well-being
With the full support of the central government in Beijing, the principle of “one countr y, two systems” has enabled Hong Kong to capture economic opportunities from the Chinese mainland’s development, while retaining a system that provides autonomy over trade and economic policies, said Clement Leung, Hong Kong commissioner to the United States.
“This has given businesses the trust, confidence and predictability to thrive in the region,” Leung said in remarks on Wednesday in New York. He spoke at an event organized by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office to celebrate the 20 th anniversary of the establishment of the special administrative region.
Since Hong Kong’s return from British rule, not only have Hong Kong emigrants returned from Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom, but it now has a strong inflow of expatriates, Leung said. The US community there has nearly doubled and the French population has tripled since 1997.
New sectors have emerged along with the development of the pillar sectors of trade, finance, tourism and professional services, he said.
Hong Kong has developed into the largest center for the offshore renminbi business and its Stock Connect programs offer international investors access to the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets.
“I’m confident about the future of Hong Kong, because successive generations of Chi- nese leaders want Hong Kong to succeed and our people continue to have this cando spirit to get things done,” Leung said.
On the same day, hundreds of people from the overseas Chinese communities of the San Francisco Bay Area gathered at the Chinese consulate there to celebrate the 20 th anniversary of the return of Hong Kong to China.
Chinese Consul- General Luo Linquan said he was proud of the successful practice of the “one country, two systems” policy over the past 20 years and pleased with Hong Kong’s great economic and social achievements. He said he had full confidence in the bright future of the special administrative region.
Luo said he witnessed the historic reunification ceremony in Hong Kong on July 1, 1997.
He said: “Hong Kong has maintained prosperity and stability, the people of Hong Kong have lived in peace and contentment, and the international community speaks highly of it.”
Under the central govern- ment’s policies, the number of Chinese mainland tourist trips ballooned from 2.36 million in 1997 to 42.7 million in 2016.
Hong Kong continues to interact positively with the Chinese mainland, said Luo. T h e Ho n g Ko n g - Z h u h a i - Macao Bridge will be completed by the end of 2017, and the Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link is scheduled to start operating in the third quarter of 2018, substantially shortening travel time between Hong Kong and the mainland.
“I believe that under the leadership of (the incoming chief executive), Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, Hong Kong people will strive to maintain Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability, take full advantage of the unprecedented development opportunities of the country, and work together with the people of the mainland to jointly write a new chapter in Hong Kong’s history,” Luo said.
Hong Kong residents display the front page of China Daily Hong Kong Edition in Causeway Bay to welcome President Xi Jinping, who arrived in Hong Kong for a three-day visit on Thursday.